The Cleveland Indians office knows what it’s doing, and it’s time fans stopped complaining about things like ‘payroll’ and free agents.
Sometimes the most infuriating critics of a town’s team are the fans. The one thing I know about The Cleveland Indians is that they are run efficiently and effectively. No, they’re not the New York Yankees or Los Angeles Dodgers. They don’t have a nearly $200 million in payroll, tied up in a handful of guys. They’re well built, well kept and well managed.
Yes, being an Indians fan can be hard, but it’s been hard for a lot of us for the course of 30 years. Being an Indians fan is all about loss. Manny Rameriz, Marty Cordova, Richie Sexton, Jim Thome, Bartolo Colon, C.C. Sabathia, Omar Vizquel, Michael Brantley; guys, this isn’t new! Yes, Francisco Lindor is going to get traded eventually. Yes, Corey Kluber was the best pitcher we’ve arguably ever had in terms of pure dominance.
That doesn’t mean “it’s over!”. It doesn’t mean this franchise still can’t win. News flash, stars don’t win you games in the Majors. Teams do. Well built teams. Teams with great farm systems. Teams who make tough decisions. Teams who know what the value of a talent is no matter what.
Mike Trout? Bryce Harper? They’re not winning titles anytime soon. Their teams spent all their money on high priced free agents that will never live up to the expectations of their contract. Free agents in baseball don’t deliver results like free agents in basketball or even hockey does. One player can’t make a team, and you better well believe it can’t break a team either.
This team won 93 games last year. Most seasons that’s the Central title, at worst a wild card. The team did that with inconsistent play in the outfield and a third basemen MVP candidate from 2018 that forgot how to hit. Oh, by the way, the team traded away a “star” pitcher to get more offense and had another star pitcher out for most of the year.
The President of baseball operations Chris Antonetti, the general manager Mike Chernoff and the team manager Tito Francona are geniuses. This team isn’t tanking or rebuilding; it’s reloading. This has been the best ran team in baseball since Francona came on board and Marty Shapiro went to…wherever he went. Mexico? England? Somewhere foreign, and exotic maybe.
Fans obviously remember that rough, say decade, after the end of the ’90s where the team was barely competitive save for that three-year stretch or so in the middle of that time period. That era isn’t coming back. This team drafts better, evaluate’s talent better and executes trades better than ever before. Have faith in this club, because talent moves on but it’s the executives that need to be retained. This is the best front office we’ve had arguably of all time.